Your Questions Answered: The Pilot Financial Merger FAQ
1. What factors were considered when deciding to merge the two organizations?
- We took a deliberate approach to this merger – with our financial professionals and clients at the heart of our decision. There are eight Guiding Principles that we believe build the basis of the benefits which we will provide to financial professionals that drove our decision-making process:
- Integrity and Ethical Operations.
- A dedicated focus on independence
- Enhanced engagement and opportunities for succession planning
- Dedication to practice development and business consultation
- Commitment and support for advisory business
- Commitment to support structure and compliance support
- Qualified administrative staff
- A support structure to accommodate multiple lines of business
2. What impact will this merger have on my practice?
- We are committed to a continuous evolution of a new and effective merged culture without losing sight of our unwavering focus on serving your needs. We do not intend to make dramatic changes in the manner we work together today. On the contrary, we expect that this merger will enable us to provide even greater levels of support and expertise in assisting our affiliated professionals with continued growth and development.
3. Are you merging all operations of both Pilot Financial and RD Marketing Group?
- At this time, we will not merge the operations related to life insurance and annuity business. Pilot Financial Advisors and RD Marketing Group will continue to operate separately, delivering best practice ideas and resources available across the two organizations.
4. What is the leadership structure of the newly merged Pilot Financial?
A: The leadership of Pilot Financial will be comprised of 5 partners.
- Christopher Roney – OSJ Manager
- Daryl King – Business Development
- Ron Angarella – Strategic Planning
- Greg Smith – PFA Life and Annuity Distribution
- Bill Harnden – RDMG Life and Annuity Distribution
- Roger Seigler – as Roger winds down his successful career, Roger will not be a partner, but will remain as a consultant.
5. Will there be any job cuts due to the merger? Front office or back office?
A: No, we do not anticipate any jobs being eliminated. In fact, through our combined resources, we will provide qualified administrative support staff who will assist our affiliated FPs in multiple areas such as navigating firm business processing systems, trading platforms, compliance, asset management platforms, etc. Additionally, we will provide administrative support as needed to all types of business organizations affiliated with our organization. Our combined staff members have over 120 years of experience in the industry and with LFSC.
6. With such a large operation, will my desire to grow and develop my business get lost in the shuffle?
A: Our merger allows us to provide access to qualified personnel within our organization and LFS, as well as resources across the financial services industry, delivering high-quality practice development and business management for your practices. This will include assistance in areas such as structural planning, personnel assistance, business development and marketing, study groups among affiliated FPs with similar practices, and many other areas related to fostering success.
7. I want to take my practice to next level and utilize the new technology and resources available to me. How will this merger help accomplish those goals?
We will provide resources dedicated to the promotion of sales activities and business growth. This will include case consultation, marketing, and product sales ideas to assist with growth and advanced sales consultation. We will also provide resources for our FPs to take full advantage of compliant cutting-edge technology, expand your use and knowledge around social media and many other tools and resources you can use to brand and grow your practice and expand your client base.
8. We’ve been asking for more resources and assistance with succession planning. How can this merger help me as I prepare for retirement or if I’m interested in purchasing another practice?
A: We will have the ability to work closely with you to make introductions for either purchase or sale of practices. We will also now be in a position to provide capital assistance if necessary – either directly or indirectly – through reputable financing referrals for practice purchases. In addition to access to our relationships, we will have dedicated personnel focused on succession planning for our affiliated professionals. These staff members will provide counsel and advice where necessary and resources to review arrangements – either by utilizing pre-formatted templates or customized agreements between parties.
9. I’m concerned that this “super OSJ” will lack the supervision and compliance support we need. How can you make sure nothing will “fall through the cracks?”
A: At the core of the OSJ structure, our commitment to compliance and supervision remains steadfast. We will provide a qualified compliance support structure to help our professionals adhere to the requirements of the industry regulatory authorities, as well as the compliance requirements of our broker-dealer. We’ll also provide an infrastructure of qualified personnel focused on maintaining close relationships across the industry and the broker-dealer to help ensure practice compliance, so you can focus on practice management and development.
10. Will the merger be able to support my interest in growing my advisory business?
A: As the trend within our industry continues to evolve along the lines of Fiduciary responsibility and asset management, we will provide personnel and resources to deliver guidance and support services to assist with continued development of practice growth. We will support multiple platforms and approaches to asset management provided by and through the broker-dealer and Registered Investment Adviser (RIA) entity. Our support structure will help affiliated professionals navigate proprietary programs offered through the RIA, TAMP programs and manager strategies, as well as offering resources from across the industry to seek best practices in these areas.
*To the extent that we are providing you with investment advisory services, including either financial planning services or ongoing investment advice as part of an investment advisory program (i.e., fee-based managed account) pursuant to a written agreement and related disclosures that describes this investment advisory relationship, we are acting in a fiduciary capacity related to those services under the federal securities laws, in particular the Investment Advisers Act of 1940.